DOJ demands answer from insurance company on merger and Democrats call it a threat

Tim Carney:
Aetna's pullout of the Obamacare exchanges in 11 states was "retaliation" to the administration blocking the insurer's merger with competitor Humana, Democrats charged Wednesday. The charges came after the Huffington Post reported on a letter in which Aetna's CEO supposedly had "threatened" to pull out unless the government approved the merger.

HuffPo reporters write of Aetna's CEO Mark Bertolini: "he made a clear threat: If President Barack Obama's administration refused to allow the merger to proceed, he wrote, Aetna would be in worse financial position and would have to withdraw from most of its Obamacare markets, and quite likely all of them."

It turns out this "threat" was a direct answer to a question the DOJ ordered Aetna to answer.

"Explain how [the transaction being blocked] affect Aetna's business strategy and operations, including Aetna's participation on the public exchanges related to the Affordable Care Act and any products or geographic areas in which Aetna may withdraw or reduce operations," the DOJ demanded.
It seems like a reasonable question and a reasonable response.  If DOJ decided to block the merger anyway it did so while being aware of the consequences of its decision.  Democrats need to address their gripe to the Democrats running the Justice Department.

Some have argued that the Democrats knew all along that the Obamacare system would not work and they went ahead with it so they could use the failure as an excuse for pushing their "single payer" system as a replacement.  When the passed Obamacare, they knew they could not pass a single payer system.  If they do go that route it will mean rationed healthcare and huge budget deficits.


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